Earbus Handover & Launch
Members of RC Karrinyup turned out in force for the handover and launch of WA’s first community-funded mobile ear clinic at the Stirling Farmers’ Market. The community based market has been a major source of fundraising for the Earbus project.
The completed Earbus is the realization of a dream for Professor Harvey Coates AO, Clinical Patron, Earbus Foundation of WA, who three years ago envisaged a mobile 'go anywhere' clinic capable of travelling to remote areas of the northwest of Western Australia. Thanks to the passionate 'fund, design and build' campaign of the RC Karrinyup, this dream has now become a reality.
The Earbus was launched on 2 April by Hon Roger Cook MLA, Deputy Prime Minister and the new Minister for Health in WA. Final touches to the vehicle, including the application of Aboriginal children’s artwork have now been completed and ensure the clinic is appealing to the youngsters it will serve.
The launch marks the operational hand-over of the bus to Earbus Foundation of WA, a rapidly emerging WA-based charity, which has already had a huge direct impact on Aboriginal children’s hearing and learning in the Pilbara and the Goldfields.
The Foundation’s new Earbus, a medical/audiology unit on wheels designed in partnership with the Rotary Club of Karrinyup, is intended to launch the charity’s work in the Kimberley once operational funding can be confirmed. In the meantime, it is expected to find its way into other regions.
Two past presidents of the Rotary Club of Karrinyup - Heather Leaney and Peter Durrant - took up the Earbus “fund, design and build” campaign with a passion. The club’s Charter member Ian McDonagh led the charge to raise the necessary $220,000 while Vocational Director Nick Nedkoff together with other Rotary Club of Karrinyup members managed the technical design and build to Earbus Foundation’s operational requirements.
Earbus Chief Executive Officer Paul Higginbotham said: “Rotary’s commitment to this project has been awe-inspiring. We can’t wait to get this new Earbus on the road and start delivering high-quality services to more and more regions of WA.”